Boston beware! Larry Fink, CEO of BlackRock Inc., is back on the talent acquisition trail.
This time, he snagged a big-time small-cap growth portfolio manager - Neil Wagner - out from under MFS Investments, Boston. With him came Andrew Thut, a small-cap analyst. Mr. Wagner was a portfolio manager at MFS, where he managed a total of $5 billion in institutional separate accounts and two mutual funds, the MFS Institutional Emerging Equities Fund and the MFS New Discovery Fund.
The two will join Wayne Archambo, whom Mr. Fink only secured after a messy lawsuit with Putnam Investments, Boston, over a non-compete agreement. Mr. Archambo, a big-time value manager in his own right, heads BlackRock's latest investment outpost in Boston. BlackRock, based in Manhattan, promises to add staff to support Mr. Wagner's small-cap growth equity strategy, which is more fundamental than the existing momentum small-cap growth stock strategy, said Barbara Novick, managing director and head of marketing and client service.
Mr. Wagner will take over the $800 million BlackRock Small-Cap Growth Fund, which will become a fundamental growth mandate. Jean Rosenbaum, who managed the fund in a momentum style, and her team will continue to manage institutional separate accounts using this style.
Mr. Wagner's back-to-basics approach soon will be offered as a new growth style to institutional clients in separate accounts, Ms. Novick said.
At MFS, David Sette-Ducati, portfolio manager and senior vice president, and Robert Henderson, analysts and vice president, have assumed management of Mr. Wagner's portfolio management duties, said John Reilly, an MFS spokesman.